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Formation of Kennington Parish

Formation of Kennington Parish:

“We have succeeded in living such useful lives that our existence on Bendigo imperishable memorials will remain.”  Rev Dr Henry Backhaus

1852:    Doctor Backhaus celebrated Bendigo’s First Public Mass on May 2nd.
1853:    The First Catholic School in the district was opened on the site of St Kilian’s on May 23rd.
1855:     Bishop Goald on his return from Bendigo to Melbourne on Christmas Eve was accompanied by Dr Backhaus as far as the “inn” at Axedale.  The Bishop wrote: “The country on the River Campaspe consists of extensive grassy plains, the soil apparently most productive.”
1865:    (approx) A church-school was built at Axe Creek, and a church, and later a school, were built in Axedale.
1874:    Dr Martin Crane was consecrated first Bishop of Sandhurst on 21st of September.
1876:    The sisters of Mercy were formally welcomed to Bendigo on January 23rd.
1878:     Attendances at Catholic Schools in our present parish were then listed as Axedale, 72; Axe Creek, 73; Middle Axe, 71; Mosquito Creek, 43.
1902:    A new church – the present one – was solemnly blessed at Axedale on Augusts 10th by Bishop Reville.
1905:    The Sisters of Good Shepherd arrived at St Aidan’s on March 20th.
1937:    A new church was opened at Axe Creek in December by Bishop McCarthy.
1955:    St Vincent’s College received its first pupil at Junortoun on February 7th.
1956:    St Therese’s School was opened at Kennington on February 13th.
1957:    St Therese’s Parish was formally erected on May 19th, with Fr Owens as the 1st Parish Priest.
1958:    St Therese’s Parish church was consecrated by Bishop Stewart on November 10th, and formally opened 9 days later.
1994:    St Francis of the Fields School was blessed and officially opened by Bishop Noel Daly on 22 May.
2002:    The multipurpose building, widely known as “Frank’s Shed”, was opened with considerable financial donations and in-kind labour from the school community.
2010:    The extended complex named the Assisi Centre was completed in May.